Entries in Armed Robbery (3)


Robber Shot in the Eye After Tussle with Feisty Grandma

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(TAMPA, Fla.) – A robber was shot in the eye by his own gun during a struggle with a feisty Florida grandmother.

Teresa Martin, 50, said she was alarmed by a “loud, crashing” noise early Saturday morning at her Tampa home.

“I thought my roommate had gotten up and stumbled into something,” she told ABC News. "I got off my bed and the next thing I knew, my bedroom door flew open and there was a man standing there with a gun pointed directly at my face.”

That man was identified by police as Leonard Porter, 34.

“He said, ‘ I know you have money.’  He kept insisting, ‘I know there’s money,’” Martin said.
When she told him she had none,  she said the suspect grabbed her by the hair, threw her on the bed and said, “[Y]ou’re fixin’ to die!”

“The next thing I know, I heard him cock the gun and I saw his hand on the trigger. I started thinking about my granddaughter and my son,” Martin said. "I decided I was going to go to town and not go out without a fight.”

Martin started kicking and punching. A few seconds later, the suspect was on the floor, bleeding from a gunshot wound to the eye.

After she woke up her roommate Jerry, who called authorities, Martin had a few words with her attacker.

“I smiled as big as I could and said, ‘Karma’s a mother, ain’t it?’” she said.

Martin said she believes Porter was sent by Johnny Acevedo, her daughter-in-law’s sister’s husband, because he knew she had received two recent checks.

Acevedo and a woman named Audra Steadman have been arrested in connection with the botched robbery, Tampa police said.

Porter, who was wanted by police for a previous home invasion, is in critical condition.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


WATCH: California Jewelry Store Owner Fires Back at Armed Robbers

AbleStock/Thinkstock(GARDEN COVE, Calif.) -- Five masked men poured into a jewelry store in a strip mall in Garden Grove, Calif., Wednesday expecting to carry out a simple smash and grab robbery.  But within less than a minute, they discovered they were no match for the store’s owner, a gray-haired woman whose finger seems quite comfortable on the trigger.

Surveillance video, featured on ABC News affiliate KABC-TV, shows a white SUV backing into a handicap parking spot directly in front of the store.  Almost as soon as the car is parked, five men, two armed with handguns, poured into the store for what they thought would be a simple get in, get out robbery.

Once they were inside, two of the suspects can be seen ordering a customer and employees to the ground, while the other suspects open sacks and demand money.

The store owner was in the back of the store when the robbery started and saw what was happening through a small opening in a wall that separates the rooms.  She then fired two rounds from a handgun at the suspects.

“The store owner feared for the safety of her employees and customers, so she had a right to defend herself,” said Garden Grove Police Lt. Jeff Nightengale.

The suspects can be seen stumbling and running into each other as they all try to get out of the door at once, scrambling to evade the gun-toting store owner.  They piled into their getaway car and drove away, but not before one of the suspects shot a round into the store’s ceiling.

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Although she did have the right to defend herself and her store, police say, they would encourage business owners not to take the law into their own hands.

“Our official recommendation is that business owners should not take the law upon themselves,” said Nightengale.  “It is difficult because when you start shooting guns those rounds can end up anywhere.  We would rather have the crime happen and have good witnesses rather than putting someone’s safety in jeopardy.”

Police say that they have none of the suspects’ identities, but they did say that they have a piece of evidence that has DNA on it which is currently being examined.

The only thing that was stolen during the whole ordeal was the customer’s cellphone. No one was injured.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


School Bus Dispatcher Allegedly Drove Getaway Car in Armed Robbery

WFTV(TITUSVILLE, Fla.) -- A Florida school bus dispatcher was suspended after she was arrested for being the alleged getaway driver for a bank robbery, authorities said.

“I’m not guilty,” Sharon Reynolds-Bell told “And that’s all I have to say, according to my lawyer.”

Reynolds-Bell, a dispatcher for the Orange County School District in Titusville, was placed on what’s called “relief of duty with pay,” pending a school board meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 28, when officials will request a vote by the board to suspend Reynolds-Bell’s pay, according Shari Bobinski, a spokesperson for Orange County Public Schools.

The bus dispatcher is fending off charges for her role in a robbery at TD Bank, according to police. According to WFTV, since being suspended with pay, Reynolds-Bell is paid $17.20 per hour.

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“The Titusville Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division was conducting a robbery detail at the TD Bank after a suspicious person entered the bank on Friday, January 27,” Sgt. Erick Barrett said in a statement. “During that detail one of our detectives noticed Bell’s vehicle driving through the area and they made some notes on the vehicle and the occupants.”

Yet Bell’s vehicle did not actually pique police interest that day. They were looking into another suspicious person, whom they then cleared as a suspect on Saturday. But on Sunday, when the TD Bank was robbed, an observant witness drew police attention back to Reynolds-Bell.

“A witness noticed the robbery suspect get into the passenger side of the getaway vehicle and drove off,” according to Barrett’s statement.

After obtaining a search warrant, the Titusville police department found evidence at Reynolds-Bell’s home, including the vehicle.

Reynolds-Bell and her husband Johnny Bell allegedly confessed to police after being read their Miranda rights. Her husband is still in jail on a $150,000 bond for robbery and grand theft.

Reynolds-Bell was arrested for principle robbery and grand theft but official charges have not been filed.

“We have filed the plea of not guilty,” said Stephen Mays, Reynolds-Bell’s attorney. “We’re looking forward to litigating these factors.”

Reynolds-Bell, “is adamantly denying the allegations and adamantly denying that she had any involvement in this situation,” Mays told ABC News.

“She does not have any firearms or weapons on her. We believe this is an issue of overzealous prosecution and overzealous actions by the Titusville police department.”

“We’ll be able to prove she had no involvement in this. The fact that they have not filed charges yet means they’re still investigating this case,” Mays said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio